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This is not a new problem, nor is it an easy one. But it must be resolved, and Congress must find the political will to both elevate the importance of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers while recognizing the need for a plan that takes climate change into account.
Here’s what we wrote last year, as drought was gripping the region. It’s just as true today as the Mississippi River overtops sandbags:
“Until Congress commits to a new river management plan that treats the entire Missouri and Mississippi river basins as one system, the cycles will continue: Droughts and flood, conflict between environmental needs and economic ones. Regional gridlock will continue. Taxpayers will be left in constant disaster mode, throwing good money after bad, never fixing the real problem.”
Distributed by MCT Information Services
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.